If you have white spots on your teeth, you’ve probably wondered where they came from and what they mean. While white spots may be the result of fluorosis (ingesting too much fluoride) if they appear in children, if you’re an adult just beginning to notice white spots on your teeth, they may be a sign of calcification. Fortunately, this condition is usually preventable and even treatable if spotted early on.
What Is Calcification?
Calcification occurs when plaque, a sticky biofilm that is composed of bacteria in your mouth, builds up and hardens on your teeth. Through a process called demineralization, plaque buildup breaks down the calcium in your tooth’s enamel. Not only does this weaken enamel, it also leaves behind white or yellowish spots on teeth. Without treatment, this can further damage enamel and even lead to cavities.
How Can I Prevent Calcification?
- Like many dental conditions, calcification can be prevented by a good oral hygiene routine. Brush your teeth twice daily, floss every day, and visit us regularly for cleanings and exams.
- Apart from good preventive care, you can also limit your risk of developing white spots on your teeth by avoiding products that stain your teeth or are highly acidic. For example, coffee can both weaken and stain your enamel while also giving plaque the chance to work its way into your teeth. As calcification deepens and intensifies, it becomes harder to reverse.
- If calcification still occurs, Dr. Akinwande often recommends patients use a special fluoride treatment. This treatment strengthens teeth through a process called remineralization – the depositing of minerals such as calcium on enamel to restore its health.
We Are Here to Help You Smile!
We know our patients at Chesterfield Dentistry want a bright, pearl-white smile they’re confident in, so we’re careful to educate our patients about calcification and our team is always on the lookout for warning signs. To ask us any other dental-related questions or schedule your next appointment, contact us today.